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shifted bridge

Discussion in 'Setup & Repair [DB]' started by olps, Jan 19, 2003.


  1. olps

    olps

    Nov 12, 2001
    Canada
    While my double bass was lying on its side it fell over; onto the bridge. The bridge has been shifted/moved to the left about 1/4 to 1/2 of an inche. How do I go about adjusting this without damaging the bass? Thank you.
     
  2. Sam Sherry

    Sam Sherry Inadvertent Microtonalist Supporting Member

    Sep 26, 2001
    Portland, ME
    Euphonic Audio "Player"
    1) Tune down about a major third
    2) Bang bridge with flat of hand
    3) Make sure bridge is properly oriented
    4) Retune
     
  3. olps

    olps

    Nov 12, 2001
    Canada
    Should I worry about the bridge bending upwards when I re-tune? Thanks for the speedy response.
     
  4. Always. Keep an eye on the bridge feet, to be sure there's no clearance anywhere. Correct it as soon as you see any, if you DO see any.

    Also, be careful that you don't goof the finish on the face of your bass, from trying to slide the bridge while there's too much tension on it.

    If you take all the tension off of all the strings at once, that might or might not allow your soundpost to fall, depending on the fit of your particular soundpost.

    You should be able to take MOST of the tension off of them without the soundpost falling, especially if you lay the bass on it's back, so there's no gravity trying to pull the soundpost over.

    You can help the bridge-pulling problem by applying graphite from a soft-lead pencil to the bridge-slots, and it isn't a bad idea for the nut slots, either.

    I use a rectangular carpenter's pencil like they sell by the cash-registers at Home Depot, but just about any #2 or softer pencil will do.

    Take almost all tension off one of the strings, so it can be lifted out of the bridge slot and out of the nut slot. Rub the point of a soft-lead pencil in the slots, to deposit graphite. Then tune the string again, and repeat for the next string, until all are lubricated.
     
  5. olps

    olps

    Nov 12, 2001
    Canada
    Excellent, excellent, excellent. You guys are a great help, thanks.
     
  6. LM Bass

    LM Bass

    Jul 19, 2002
    Vancouver, BC
    No need to bang the bridge with your hand. You can just loosen most of the strings, leaving one string down about a minor third or less, and just nudge the bridge with your hand.
     
  7. LM Bass

    LM Bass

    Jul 19, 2002
    Vancouver, BC
    Oh yeah,

    There are little nicks in the "F" holes that show you where to line up the middle of the bridge feet. For side to side alignment: you want to have as much fingerboard on either side of the "G" and "E" string when you look at it from the front. The tailpiece side of the bridge should form a right angle with the bass belly.
     
  8. erik II

    erik II

    Jul 11, 2000
    Oslo, Norway
    If the bridge has adjusters, you'll probably have to turn the feet back in line after moving the bridge.

    If the bridge tilts towards the neck after strings are tightened, you'll need to whack it straight with something. Some use a karate chop just under the strings. So did I until (All Hail) Bob Gollihur suggested using the back of a book - slide the book down between the A- and the D-string and tap the bridge in position. A lot more comfortable and easier to control.
     
  9. LM Bass

    LM Bass

    Jul 19, 2002
    Vancouver, BC
    Bridge whacking is not necessary, and you might just knock the bridge right off! The bridge can be maneuvered around very easily if you let off all the strings most of the way, and the "D" string some of the way.
     
  10. erik II

    erik II

    Jul 11, 2000
    Oslo, Norway
    I meant after the bridge is positioned, and the strings tuned. The top of the bridge may then have been pulled a little towards the neck, even if the string slots are properly lubricated.